This Day, April 20, In Jewish History by Mitchell A and Deb Levin Z"L

April 20

121:  Birthdate of Marcus Aurelius 16th Roman emperor.  The “Philosopher” Emperor reigned from 161-180 and he was a cut above those who came before and after him.  But he had a low opinion of the Jews, referring to them as “stinking and tumultuous” as “he rode through Judea.”  He reportedly preferred the company of the barbaric Teutons in the north to that of the Jews.  This attitude may have been shaped by the difficulty the Romans had in defeating the Jews during their successive rebellions against Rome.  Only 25 years before Marcus Aurelius came to power, it had taken the full force of the Roman Empire four years to finally defeat Bar Kochba and Rabbi Akiva

570: Birthdate of Muhammad or Mohammad, the founder of Islam.

1096: Approximately 40,000 peasants led by Peter Hermit left Cologne on the start of what was called the “Peasants’ Crusade.”  This populist movement among the poor was the most ill-fated part of the First Crusade.  The peasants had nothing and trusted in God to provide for them. This meant living off of the land which would bode ill for those in their path including the Jews of the Rhineland.

1103(10th of Iyar, 4863): Ninety-year-old Isaac ben Jacob Alfasi ha-Cohen, also known as the Alfasi or by his Hebrew acronym Rif (Rabbi Isaac al-Fasi), a Maghrebi Talmudist and posek (decider in matters of halakha - Jewish law) who is best known for his work of halakha, the legal code Sefer Ha-halachot, considered the first fundamental work in halakhic literature. Passed away today in Lucena, Al-Andalus.

1176: Richard de Clare, 2nd Earl of Pembroke, nicknamed “Strongbow” whose attempt to establish an independent kingdom in Ireland was bankrolled by a Jewish financier, “Josce Jew of Gloucester” passed away today.

1191: Phillip II, who expelled the Jews from France in 1182 after extorting as much money as he could from them, arrived at Acre to perform his holy Christian obligation to take part in the Crusades.

1192: As the Christians jockey for control over the Holy Land, Richard I of England gives his support to Conrad of Montferrat’s claim to be King of Jerusalem.

1298(7th of Iyar, 5058):  In Rotttingen, a small German town in Franconia, a local noble named Rindfleish, accused the local Jews of profaning the host. He then incited the Burgher and local populace to join in the killing. Twenty one Jews were murdered. The killing soon spread to a hundred and forty communities in Bavaria and Austria. In all tens of thousands of Jews were either killed or wounded.  The killing stopped when the civil war raging through Germany ended.  Albrecht, the newly chosen Emperor, brought an end to the violence and even punished some the participants.

1303: Pope Boniface VIII issues the bull creating The University of Rome La Sapienza. Considering the fact that Boniface believed in the concept that “Outside the Church, no Salvation” meaning that the key to salvation required membership in the Catholic Church, it is safe to assume that there were no Jewish students or faculty at the school.  Relations between the Jews and the school have obviously changed as can be seen by the “wide-ranging cooperation agreement” that was signed by Tel Aviv University and Rome's Sapienza University in March of 2010. The agreement allows for exchanges of students and professors, as well as joint research projects and master's programs. The Italian economist Franco Modigliani and Zionst Ze'ev Jabotinsky were two of the most prominent Jews to attend the University of Rome during the 20th century.

1314: Pope Clement V the first of the “Avignon Popes who in the first year of his reign, 1305, became the “first pope to threaten Jews with an economic boycott in an attempt to force them to stop charging Christians interest on loans passed away today.

1344(28th of Nisan, 5104): Levi Ben Gershon (the RaLBaG) also known as Gersonides passed away.

1505: Philibert of Luxembourg expelled the Jews from Orange Burgundy. At this time Luxembourg is ruled by Phillip the Fair, King of Spain - where Jews had been expelled in 1492.  Phillip's mother was Marie of Burgundy.  In this case the Jews merely seemed to have gotten caught up in the dynastic swirl that was so much of European History prior to the French Revolution.

1506: Violence continued for a second day in Lisbon after Christians attack the Jews when a recently converted Jew “raised doubts” about the appearance of a miraculous vision at St. Dominic’s Church. (History of the Jewish People)

1615:  Led by Dr. Chemnitz, the guilds of Worms "non-violently" forced the Jews from the city. Chemnitz was a lawyer and he devised a series of schemes where the Jews were deprived of food and the ability to leave and enter the city.  A deputation came to them on what was the seventh day of Pesach and gave them an hour to leave the city.  As the Jews left, the thousand year old synagogue and the adjacent burial grounds were attacked and desecrated by the "non-violent" citizens of Worms, Germany.

1632(29th of Nisan): “Nicolas Antione, a French Protestant theologian and pastor who attempted to convert to Judaism and lived the life of a crypto-Jew “suffered martyrdom by being burned at the stake in Geneva today.

1657:  After a battle of almost two years Asser Levy one of the original 23 settlers was allowed to serve on guard duty . Levy had been denied the right to serve, having been told to pay a tax instead.  This was the European Way of doing things.  Levy would have none of it.  Serving guard duty marked him as a full-fledged citizen.  It was an early indication that the New World would indeed be a new world for the Jews. Levy who was the ritual slaughterer of the town opened his slaughterhouse on what is now Wall Street. He further petitioned to be allowed the rights as a Burgher or freeperson on the town, which he received albeit reluctantly by the burgomasters of New Amsterdam.

1728: The London Gazette reports that twelve individuals (including four Jews) who had been previously captured by Moroccan pirates are now released under a new peace treaty between England and the Emperor of Morocco. Rachel, David, and Raphael Franco along with Blanco Flora had been captured while en route from London to New York. The Gazette reports that they were returned to England on "His Majesty's Ship Monmouth." Interestingly enough, though the other victims are listed by name and nationality i.e. William Pendergrass/English, Joseph Patroon/Spanish, Alboro Tordaselas/Gibraltar— the four Jews (Rachel, David and Raphael Franco, and Blanco Flora), are listed as "Jews," under nationality. These events of 1728 preceded the era of Jew Bills and the civil and religious liberties of Jewish people were far from secure. They were indeed people without a country. Our research shows the Franco family to be of Portuguese/Sephardic extraction, who generations before undoubtedly fled the Inquisition of Portugal. Raphael Franco became a powerful merchant in the diamond and coral trade operating between India, Brazil and England.

1729: London native Mordecai Marks who came to America in 1726 “was baptized today at Stratford, CT.”

1746: Four days after the Battle of Culloden, during the “Jacobite Rising” for which Sampson Gideon provided the funds to the Hanoverian-Whig government so it could defeat Charles Edward Stuart, Charles, Charles dismissed his remaining force of 1,500 saying that the fight could not go on without French support.

1747: In New York City, Jochabed Michaels and Judah Mears gave birth to (Judith) Rachel Mears, the wife of Moses Iaacks whom she married in 1764 and with whom she had fourteen children.

1753(16th of Nisan, 5513): Second Day of Pesach celebrated on the same day “Benjamin Franklin found a way to light a drug cigarette, today known as a "joint" or maybe even as a "thick fat blunt" as one youth cannabis blogger so eloquently put it, using the electric jolt of lightning.”

1759: Vögele Pressburg, the daughter of Isak Aron Arnsteiner and Ella Elsa Eleonora Arnsteiner and wife of Simon Samuel Pressburg passed away today at Mattersburg, Burgenland, Austria.

1760: In Buchau, Franziska Levi and David Einstein gave birth to Moses David Einstein.

1761(16th of Nisan, 1761): Second Day of Pesach; First Day of the Omer

1764(18th of Nisan, 5524): Fourth Day of Pesach observed on the same day that Abigail Smith, the future wife of founding father John Adams, wrote to him during their courtship.

1767(21st of Nisan, 5527): Seventh Day of Pesach observed as the UK prepares to enact the Townsend Acts, measures which will inflame relations with the thirteen American colonies and lead to the American Revolution

1772(17th of Nisan, 5532): Third day of Pesach

1772(17th of Nisan, 5532): Israel Ben Moses Ha-Levi Zamosz, a Polish born Talmudist who wrote on both religious and secular subjects passed away today at Brody

1773(27th of Nisan, 5533): Nehm Joseph Rindskopf, the son of Joseph (Yosel) Alexander Rindskopf, z. Ampel and Jentel Mosche Rindskopf and husband of Hindle Rindskopf passed away today in Frankfurt.

1775(20th of Nisan, 5535): Sixth Day of Pesach observed as the British lick their wounds in Boston after yesterday’s losses at Concord and on the same day that the Royal Governor of Virginia makes the mistake of seizing gun power in what became known as the “Gunpowder Affair” which ended, unlike the episode with no shots being fired.

1777: At Kingston, the New York Convention voted to guarantee the free exercise of religion.

1783(18th of Nisan, 5543): Fourth Day of Pesach observed on the same day that Daniel Parker wrote General Washington concerning his meetings in New York the British leader Sir Guy Carleton where they talked about plans for allowing the Tories sail from that city now that the war is officially over.

1785: Birthdate of German native Nanette Wexler the wife of Leser Lazarus Ochsenhorn whom she married in 1803 and with whom she had eight children.

1786(22nd of Nisan, 5546): Eighth Day of Pesach; Yizkor observed on the same day that future political opponents Thomas Jefferson and John Adams, along with his family, spent the day together in London.

1790: Birthdate of Ludwig Hermann Friedlander, the native of Konigsberg who served as physician with the Prussian Army, the first step on a career that led to him being appointed as a Professor of Theoretical Medicine at Halle, as position he held until his death in 1851.

1791(16th of Nisan, 5551): Second Day of Pesach celebrated on the same day that, during the French Revolution King Louis XVI and Queen Marie-Antoinette attempted to flee to Varennes.

1795: In Kingston, Jamaica, Grace Cohen, the London born daughter of Aaron Gomes Da Costa and Miriam De Solomon Gomes Da Costa and the husband Judah Mordechai Cohen gave birth to Andrew Cohen.

1796: Amsterdam native Rabbi Abraham Azuby, the “first paid rabbi at K.K. Beth Elohim Congregation in Charleston” officiated at the wedding of “Benjamin Milhado of Kingston, Jamaica to Hannah Depass, “the youngest daughter of Ralph Depass, a vendue master” in Charleston, SC. (Editor’s note – according to the dictionary a vendue master is an auctioneer.)

1799(15th of Nisan, 5559): First day of Pesach and Shabbat

1799: In a proclamation, a copy of which is quoted below, Napoleon "promised" the Jews of Eretz Israel the "reestablishment of ancient Jerusalem", coupled with a plea for their support. This was the first promise by a modern government to establish a Jewish state. In 1799, the French armies under Napoleon were camped outside of Acre. Napoleon issued a letter offering Palestine as a homeland to the Jews under French protection. The project was stillborn because Napoleon was defeated and was forced to withdraw from the Near East. The letter is remarkable because it marks the coming of age of enlightenment philosophy, making it respectable at last to integrate Jews as equal citizens in Europe and because it marked the beginning of nineteenth century projects for Jewish autonomy in Palestine under a colonial protectorate. After the defeat of Napoleon, it was largely the British who carried forward these projects, which have in hindsight been given the somewhat misleading name of "British Zionism." Napoleon conquered Jaffa but retreated from Acco (Acre); Napoleon's Proclamation of a Jewish State was stillborn, and his declaration of equal rights for Jews was repealed in part in 1806.

Letter to the Jewish Nation from the French Commander-in-Chief Bonaparte issued at General Headquarters, Jerusalem 1st Floreal, April 20th, 1799, in the year of 7 of the French Republic by BUONAPARTE, COMMANDER-IN-CHIEF OF THE ARMIES OF THE FRENCH REPUBLIC IN AFRICA AND ASIA, TO THE RIGHTFUL HEIRS OF PALESTINE.

Israelites, unique nation, whom, in thousands of years, lust of conquest and tyranny have been able to be deprived of their ancestral lands, but not of name and national existence!
Attentive and impartial observers of the destinies of nations, even though not endowed with the gifts of seers like Isaiah and Joel, have long since also felt what these, with beautiful and uplifting faith, have foretold when they saw the approaching destruction of their kingdom and fatherland: And the ransomed of the Lord shall return, and come to Zion with songs and everlasting joy upon their heads; they shall obtain joy and gladness and sorrow and sighing shall flee away. (Isaiah 35,10) Arise then, with gladness, ye exiled!  A war unexampled In the annals of history, waged in self-defense by a nation whose hereditary lands were regarded by its enemies as plunder to be divided, arbitrarily and at their convenience, by a stroke of the pen of Cabinets, avenges its own shame and the shame of the remotest nations, long forgotten under the yoke of slavery, and also, the almost two-thousand-year-old ignominy put upon you; and, while time and circumstances would seem to be least favorable to a restatement of your claims or even to their expression ,and indeed to be compelling their complete abandonment, it offers to you at this very time, and contrary to all expectations, Israel's patrimony! The young army with which Providence has sent me hither, let by justice and accompanied by victory, has made Jerusalem my head-quarters and will, within a few days, transfer them to Damascus, a proximity which is no longer terrifying to David's city. Rightful heirs of Palestine! The great nation which does not trade in men and countries as did those which sold your ancestors unto all people (Joel,4,6) herewith calls on you not indeed to conquer your patrimony ;nay, only to take over that which has been conquered and, with that nation's warranty and support, to remain master of it to maintain it against all comers.
Arise! Show that the former overwhelming might of your oppressors has but repressed the courage of the descendants of those heroes who alliance of brothers would have done honor even to Sparta and Rome (Maccabees 12, 15) but that the two thousand years of treatment as slaves have not succeeded in stifling it. Hasten!, Now is the moment, which may not return for thousands of years, to claim the restoration of civic rights among the population of the universe which had been shamefully withheld from you for thousands of years, your political existence as a nation among the nations, and the unlimited natural right to worship Jehovah in accordance with your faith, publicly and most probably forever (JoeI 4,20).

1801(7th of Iyar, 5561): Barnard Gratz, the German born son of Mr. and Mrs. Solomon Gratz, the husband of Richea Myers-Cohen and the father of Fanny and Rachel Gratz passed away today in Baltimore, MD.

1803: Myer Tobias married Hannah Woolf at the Great Synagogue today.

1808: Birthdate of Louis-Napoleon, nephew of Napoleon Bonaparte who became Napoleon III, Emperor of France from 1852 to 1871. On July 19, 1870, Napoleon III declared war on Prussia in what is known as the Franco-Prussian War. A number of Jews, including Jules Moch and Leopold See, attained high rank in the French army. See later became Secretary General of the Ministry of the Interior. The war also marked the beginning of Rabbis serving as chaplains in the German army. After the War the region of Alsace and part of Lorraine became annexed to Germany. Many Jewish families preferred to emigrate rather than be under German rule.

1810(16th of Nisan, 5570): Second Day of Pesach celebrated on the second day of the Venezuelan War of Indepenece.

1811: Ephraim Gompertz married Adelaide Smith at “Camberwell St. Giles.”

1813(20th of Nisan, 5573): Sixth Day of Pesach observed a week before American forces under General Zebulion Pike captured York, Canada during the War of 1812.

1814(30th of Nisan, 5574): Rosh Chodesh Iyar

1814(30th of Nisan, 5574): Thirty-four-year-old “Jewish writer, teacher, translator and publisher” Moses Philippson passed away today at Desau.

1816(22nd of Nisan, 5576): Eighth Day of Pesach; Yizkor

1817: Solomon Joseph Mordecai, the Virginia born son of Esther and Joseph Mordecai married Isabella Jane Kincaid today in Franklin, MO.

1818(14th of Nisan 5578): Ta’anit Bechorot; erev Pesach observed on the same day that President James Monroe signed the Neutrality Act of 1818 into law.

1822: In Denmark, Thamar (Terese) Rée, the daughter of Isac Hartvig Rée and Sara Wulff von Essen and her husband Hartvig Philip Rée gave birth to Vilhelm Hartvig Rée

1824(22nd of Nisan, 5584): Eighth Day of Pesach; Yizkor observed for the last time during the Presidency of James Monroe

1826(14th of Nisan, 5586): Ta’anit Bechorot, erev Pesach

1828: One day after she had passed away 78-year-old Judith Cohen, the wife of Aaron Cohen and the most of Samuel and Rosy Cohen was buried today at the Lauriston Jewish Cemtery.

1832: Congress established a park at Hot Springs, Arkansas when it designated its famous natural springs as a natural resource preserve as people from around the country flocked to the 143 degree water as a medical treatment for arthritis and other bone ailments. Jews were connected with Hot Springs from its earliest day.  Jacob Mitchell, a Jewish immigrant from Galicia, arrived in Arkansas in 1830 along with his two brothers.  Mitchell somehow acquired an old Spanish land grant to a portion of the springs, and he and his heirs spent the next forty years unsuccessfully fighting the federal government in court over their rights to the springs. Regardless of the status of the litigation, Mitchell became an active part of the city’s commercial scene when bought a hotel in Hot Springs in 1846 and opened a bath house.

1835(21st of Nisan, 5595): Seventh Day of Pesach

1835: Henry Russell married Isabella Lloyd today.

1837(15th of Nisan, 5597): Jews observe Pesach for the first time with Martin Van Buren as President of the U.S.

1838: Charlotte Beyfus married German banker Abraham Oppenheim.

1840(17th of Nisan, 5600): Third Day of Pesach; on the Jewish calendar Yahrzeit Rabbi Reuben Hoeshke, Katz who died in 1673.

1841: Despite opposition from Hamburg’s Ashkenazi community led by Chief Rabbi Isaac Bernays, the Senate granted a license to the New Israelite Temple Society to build a house of worship.

1843(20th of Nisan, 5603): Sixth Day of Nisan; on the Jewish calendar Yahrzeit of Rav Hai Goen who passed away in 1038.

1846(NS): in Meshchovsk, Kaluga Governorate, Russia, schoolteacher Konstantin von Plehve and Elizaveta Mikhailovna Shamaev gave birth to the vociferously antisemitic Interior Minister Vyacheslav von Plehve  who recommended a further worsening of the Jews' legal position following the pogroms of the 1880’s and 1890’s.

1846: Two days after the end of Pesach, in London, Fanny Heilbronner and Isaac Samuel gave birth to Theodore Samson Samuel

1848(17th of Nisan, 5608): Third Day of Pesach; on the Jewish calendar, Yahrzeit of Israe ben Moses Zamosc of Brody who passed away in 1772.

1851(18th of Nisan, 5611): 4th day of Pesach

1851: In Breslau, Samuel Lubszyński and Rebeka Lubszyńska gave birth to Zygmunt Lubszyński, who gained fame as Siegmund Lubin “the motion picture who founded Lubin Manufacturing Company, the Philadelphia, PA film company.

1851: After three years of meeting at a building on Pearl Street, Congregation B’nai Israel moved to Number 63 Christie Street, where the congregation began raising “funds for the erection of a more commodious synagogue to the meet the requirements of the rapidly increasing membership.”

1851(18th of Nisan, 5611): Isaac Erter, the native of Galicia who gained fame as a physician and satirist passed away today at Brody.

1852: Abraham Harris married Leah Brandon today at the Great Synagogue.

1854(22nd of Nisan, 5614): Eighth and final day of Pesach observed as pro- and anti-slavery forces fought it out in what was called “Bleeding Kansas.”

1856(15th of Nisan, 5616): First Day of Pesach

1860: Fortunee (nee Dayan) Lichenstein, the wife of Louis Lichtenstein was buried today at the “Balls Pond Road Jewish Cemetery.”

1860: “In a small town near Kowno, Russia, David Rabbino and Leah Yeglin gave birth to Bernhard Rabbino, the husband of Anna Ladewig who served as a rabbi at several American congregations beginning with one Keokuk, IA in 1884 before becoming an attorney in Florida and then in New York where he settled in 1899 and became an attorney with the Legal Aid Bureau of the Educational Alliance.

1861: Joseph Seligman, “whose firm, J. and J. Seligman & Co., sold federal bonds in the astonishing sum of $200,000,000” attended a pro-Union meeting today held at Union Square in New York City.

1861: In Baltimore, MD, a pro-Southern mob attacked the printing shops that produced Der Wecker and Sinai, two "abolitionist publications.  Rabbi Einhorn, an out-spoken foe of slavery, felt threatened enough to agree to the request of his congregation that he leave the city.  Einhorn would move to Philadelphia where he would resume publishing the Sinai.

1862(20th of Nisan, 5622): Sixth Day of Pesach

1862: In London, Sara Bloom Phillips and Solomon Abraham to Rose Bloom Abraham

1863(1st of Iyar, 5623): Rosh Chodesh Iyar observed on the same day that President “Lincoln announced that West Virginia would join the Union on June 20th, 1863.”

1864(14th of Nisan, 5624): Ta’anit Bechorot; Erev Pesach

1864: In Opava, a town in the Moravian-Silesian Region, Samuel D. and Charlotte Kaluber gave birth to Emile Kaluber who married an attorney Alois Eisler and became Emilie Eisler, the mother of Otto, Rudolf and Paul Eisler.

1864: “In Wilno, Russia, Chaim and Chaya (Kabatchnik) Weinstein gave birth to Brooklyn journalist and political activist Gregory Weinstein, a reporter with The Leader, a supporter of Henry George, and an organizer of the “first Jewish Workingman’s Unions who was the husband of Eugenie Lasser, the author of Savonarola: Italian Reformer and Patriot and the publisher of Jew-Baiting by Horace Bridges.

1865: “An estimated 25 million Americans attended memorial services for Abraham Lincoln in Washington and around the country.” In New York several synagogues held well-attended services in memory of the recently assassinated President. At Shearith Israel, after the choir sang a variety of Psalms, Rabbi J.J. Lyons “delivered a short but eloquent address, in which he frequently” referred “to the qualities of the man and the unswerving loyalty and honesty of the statesman, whose loss they were…suddenly called upon to mourn.”  This was followed by a recitation of the Kaddish and “a special prayer for the recovery of Secretary of State Seward who had been wounded on the same night that Lincoln had been killed. The service ended with a prayer for “ the future prosperity of the country” and the chanting of psalms by the choir.  At B'nai Jeshurun, the chanting of Psalms was followed by a Dr. Raphael’s sermon in which he praised the virtues of the slain President. At the Broadway Synagogue, the chanting of opening hymns was followed by a prayer for the government before the opened Ark and a sermon by Rabbi S.W. Isaacs based on Genesis, chap. xv., v. 1: "Fear not, Abraham; I am thy shield. Thy reward shall be exceedingly great.'' Services were also held at several other synagogues including the Norfolk Street Synagogue, the Greene Street Synagogue and Temple Emanu-El. The neat little synagogue of the Congregation Sheary Berochole, in East Ninth street, was the scene of very impressive ceremonies. At noon, the building was filled to overflowing with a very respectable audience, mostly dressed in deep mourning, to participate in the services commemorative of the death of Mr. Lincoln arranged by the congregation. After reciting Psalms 1, 4, 5, 6, 7 and 10, the Kadish, or prayer for deceased persons, was said, and the Minchah Prayer intoned, at the close of which Rev. H. WASSERMAN delivered the funeral sermon. His text was from Isaiah 44, 7: "For a small moment I have forsaken thee, and all forsook thee." The tenor of his discourse was the necessity of trusting to the goodness of God, however mysterious his providences may seem. He exhorted all to imitate the honesty, charity and good will to all men which had distinguished the life and character of our deceased President. The Hebrew prayer for a deceased father was then said, coupled with an exhortation for the recovery of the Secretary of State and his son was then said, and after the recitation of five psalms, the congregation dispersed.

1865: In New York City, Caroline and Daniel Mann gave birth to actor and director Louis Mann, the husband of actress Clara Lippman and the brother of Nathaniel Mann.

1865: As the nation mourned the death of President Lincoln, today’s Boston Traveler noted that “solemn and appropriate services were held at both Jewish synagogues” – a reference to Adath Israel, a Reform Congregation led by Rabbi Joseph Schoninger and Mishkan Israel led by Rabbi Alexis Alexander.

1866: In a plebiscite, Charles was elected in a near unanimous vote to serve as King of Romania. His government would not prove to be a protector of its Jewish citizens.

1867(15th of Nisan, 5627): Jews living in Alaska celebrate Pesach for the first time as U.S. citizens since the U.S. had purchased Seward’s Folly 30 days ago.

1868: Birthdate of French author Charles Maurras, whose anti-Semitism first surfaced during the Dreyfus Affair and continued through his support for Vichy and Petain.

1871(29th of Nisan, 5631): Polish author Jacob Tugenhold who was born near Krakow and who founded a “modern Jewish school” in Warsaw, passed away today.

1874: Di Yidishe Gazeten, the first influential Yiddish newspaper in the United States began publication today.

1875(15th of Nisan, 5635): Pesach

1875: Birthdate of Edouard Alexandre de Pomiane, also known as Edouard Pozerski author of the 1929 epic “The Jews of Poland: Recollections and Recipes” who passed away in 1964.

1876: In Hungary, Emil and Sally Gintzler gave birth to Cooper Union graduate and NYU trained attorney Morris Gintzler, “the president of the Pulp and Paper Trading Company and the husband of Rose Gintzler with whom she had had two daughter – Selma and Dorothy.

1877: Louis David Meyers, the son of Henry Myers and Julia Davis was buried today at the “Balls Pond Road Jewish Cemetery.”

1878(17th of Nisan, 5638): Shabbat shel Pesah

1879: According to the report made by Superintendent Louis today, the Brooklyn Hebrew Orphan Asylum was home to 10 children, eight of whom were boys and two of whom were girls, ranging in age from three and half years to ten years.

1879: Birthdate of Ukraine native Isaac Streisand, the husband of Anna Streisand and the grandfather of award winning entertainer Barbra Streisand.

1881(21st of Nisan, 5641): Seventh Day of Pesach; on the Jewish calendar, Yahrzeit of Rabbi Daniel of Horodno who passed away in 1806.

1882(1st of Iyar, 5642): Rosh Chodesh Iyar

1882:  J. A. Engelbart presided over tonight’s meeting of a committee formed “raise money to feed and shelter Jewish refugees from Russia and to aid them in finding home in” in the United States.  The meeting was held at B’nai Jeshrun.  Among the attendees were Rabbi Henry S. Jacobs and Dr. Simeon N. Leo.

1882: It was reported today that a dispatch from St. Petersburg “states that the persecution of the Jews continues” unabated.  At least 17,000 Jews have been left homeless after villages in Southern Russia were destroyed.

1882: “Current Foreign Topics” published today described a private meeting that had been held in Berlin to provide assistance for Jews who wished to leave Russia.  The attendees pledged seventy thousand marks to assist in the endeavor.

1883: In Frankfurt, Germany, Leo Isaac and his wife gave birth to Robert Isaac, who came to the United States in 1915, worked with Eugene Meyer before going on to the “investment firm of Halle and Stieglitz and married the “former Lucile Martin.”

1883(13th of Nisan, 5643): Ninety-one-year-old Asher American, who had served as the Assistant Reader at congregations on Norfolk, Stanton and Sixth Streets passed away tonight.

1883: It was reported today that The Cleveland Herald has been interviewing the city’s Jewish clergy on the possibility of Jews returning to Palestine.  Rabbi Hahn considers the idea as being impracticable and feels that “the Jewish people…are a great deal better off here than they could possibly be there.”  Rabbi Lane echoes these sentiments and “is most strongly opposed to …immigration schemes.”   The Herald believes “that these gentlemen speak the prevailing sentiment” of the Jewish people.

1884: According to “The Relations of Animal Diseases to the Public Health and Their Prevention” by Frank S. Billings which was reviewed today’s New York Times, the author “quotes the Hebrew legislator who forbade pork as food for the chosen people of the Lord.  Moses did this with a knowledge of its ‘non- hygienic character.”

1884(25th of Nisan, 5644): Dr. Lyon Berhard, one of the oldest dentists in New York passed away today in Manhattan.  Born in Amsterdam in 1812 and a graduate of the Baltimore College of Dentistry, he came to New York 42 years ago.  He was a founding member of B’Nai Israel and was an active member of the Hebrew Mutual Benefit Society.

1884: Rabbi Gustav Gottheil, Rabbi Kaufman Kohler and Joseph Blumenthal were among the attendees at a reception given at the new building of the Hebrew Sheltering Guardian Society.  The building which is located at Avenue A and 87th Street was originally built for the use of the late John Jacob Astor.

1886(15th of Nisan, 5646): First Day of Pesach

1886: Birthdate of Pauline Lonnersteadter Thalhimer, the wife of Gustavus Thalhimer and mother of Morton Gustavus Thalhimer.

1888: It was reported today that in Jacksonville, FL, Rabbi of Levy of Charleston, SC had presided at the marriage of Susie Jacoby of Charleston to Mose J. Ullman of Evansville, Indiana.

1888:  The Jewish Messenger reports that Orach Chaim has contributed support for a New York City Chief Rabbi. "This action is the more significant as it is the first uptown congregation to join the downtown contingent and mostly composed of Germans while the other uptown orthodox congregations are mostly composed of the Polish element."

1888((9th of Iyar): Russian born philanthropist Samuel Poljakoff passed away.

1889: Birthdate of Otto Heinrich Frank, father of Anne Frank, who survived the Holocaust and passed away in 1980.

1889: Birthdate of Adolph Hitler

1889: In Chicago, Israel and Augusta (née Mendeburskey) Balaban gave birth A.J. (Abraham Joseph Blaban) the co-founder the Balaban and Katz Motion Picture Theatre chain.

1889: Birthdate of Albert Jean Amateau, rabbi, businessman, lawyer and social activist. Born a Sephardic Jew in Milas, Turkey, Amateau attended the American International College in Izmir (Smyrna), Turkey. He immigrated to the United States in 1910. In the early 1920s, Amateau began a movement to bring more Jews into the workplace and government. He was also involved largely in the affairs of deaf people. After he returned from the Army (he served in World War I), Amateau was ordained in 1920 at the Jewish Theological Seminary, and he became the first rabbi of a congregation of the deaf. In 1941, Amateau developed the Albert J. Amateau Foreign Language Service, a business providing translators for lipsync dubbing for motion pictures. The business continued in operation until 1989. An ardent supporter of his homeland of Turkey, Amateau began various Turkish-oriented organizations while residing in the United States. In 1992, at the age of 103, he helped found the American Society of Jewish Friends of Turkey and was named as its president. Amateau was also an advocate of peace, and in 1937, he assisted with negotiations between Jews and Arabs of Palestine. Amateau died in 1996 at the age of 106 years, 10 months.

1890(30th of Nisan, 5650): Rosh Chodesh Iyar

1890: “In Trois-Rivières, Berthe (née Genest) and local politician Nérée Le Noblet Duplessis gave birth to Maurice Duplessis who as Premier of the Province of Quebec issued the warrant which empowered the provincial police to raid “the cultural section of the Canadian Labor Circle, a Jewish fraternal organization” during which they removed “eight hundred books of the 950 volume library maintained by Jewish cultural circle.”

1890: Birthdate of Erfut, Germany native David Baumgardt the author and philosopher who in 1939 found refuge in the United States where he worked for Archibald MacLeish, the Librarian of Congress, wrote such books as Maimonides in 1955 and Great Western Mystics: Their Lasting Significance in 1961.

1890: In Russia, “Joseph and Sarah (Herman) Frisch gave birth University of Minnesota trained attorney, Leonard Herman Frisch who in 1901 came to the United States where he worked for the Immigration Bureau and while serving as the editor of the American Jewish World and Director of the Talmud Torah of Minneapolis, MN.

1890: It was reported today that strikers in Austria are trying to turn the labor unrest “into an anti-Jewish crusade.  Many of the mill and mine owners in the region are Jewish and the Rothschilds own the largest iron and steel works at Witkowitz.  The strikers have turned their fury on the local Jewish merchants and their attacks have left several hundred Jewish families “camping in the fields in utter destitution.

1891: A fire broke out in a tenement house at 194 Henry Street which is home to a large number of Russian Jews.

1892: In Russia, Leon and Bessie Levoitz Epstein gave birth University of Pittsburgh graduate Abraham Epstein a pioneer in the field of providing financial support for the “elderly” which led to what we now know as Social Security.

1893(4th of Iyar, 5653): Dr. Wilhelm Lowenthal, “the Jewish scientist who had been invited to Argentina in 1890 to share his technological expertise on agricultural matters” and who “persuaded Baron de Hirsch to fund the Jewish Colonization Association (JCA) to aid Jewish settlers in Argentina” passed away today.

1893: William A. Matson, the Secretary of the Church Society for Promoting Christianity Among the Jews wrote a letter today in which he took issue Reverend Jacob Freshman’s statement he was “the pioneer” in New York City “in mission work for the conversion of the Jews

1894(14th of Nisan, 5654): Fast of the First Born

1894(14th of Nisan, 5654): “Festival of the Passover” published today states that “Pesach, the Jewish festival of the Passover, begins the evening and continues for a week.”  Furthermore, “the households of the Orthodox and many of those who have accepted the modern or reformed” customs will host a Seder.

1895(26th of Nisan, 5655): Joseph Heiman Caro, author of Ṭevaḥ ṿe-hakhen (טבח והכן: כל דני שחיטות ובדיקות) passed away today

1895: The Hebrew Orphan Asylum Band performed at the Odd Fellows’ Home Fair which is being held at the Lenox Lyceum.

1896: “A Precious Privilege Retained” published today described a declaration published by the anti-Semitic German “National” Students at the University of Vienna stating that “they would henceforth refust to accept challenges from the Jewish Students’ Corps, as they would think themselves defiled if they fought them.”  The Rector refused to respond to an appeal from the Jewish students asking that this declaration be overturned. According to some observers, the German students’ declaration is rooted in the fact that the Jews have defeated them whenever a challenge was made and accepted.

1897 (18th of Nisan, 5657): Fourth Day of Pesach

1897: In Samara, Russia, Sophie (née Markison) and Benjamin Ratner gave birth to Grigory Vasilyevich Ratner, who gained fame as actor and director Gregory Ratoff whose portrayal of “Max Fabian” in “All About Eve” is one of my personal favorites.

1899: Fire broke out tonight at the New York Theatre in the “dressing rooms used by ‘Hebrew Creditors’ characters” appearing in the first act “The Man in the Moon.”

1899: Testimony continues to be given before the Court of Cassation in the Dreyfus revision inquiry.

1899: Four days after she had passed away, Eliza Kane, the daughter of “Moses J. and Sarah Henriques” and the wife of John Clarke Kane was buried today at the “Balls Pond Road Jewish Cemetery.”

1900(20th of Nisan, 5660): Sixth Day of Nisan

1900: Max Nordau introduced Herzl to Alfred Austin who gives him a friendly letter to Lord Salisbury, the British Prime Minister. Herzl sought British support in his attempts to persuade the government at Constantinople to allow the development of a Jewish homeland. . Salisbury did not receive Herzl "on account of the war worries".

1901(1st of Iyar, 5661): Parashat Tazria-Metzora; Rosh Chodesh Iyar

1901: “Alliance Israelite Universelle” published today described plans for a meeting to “be held in the vestry rooms of Temple Emanu-El under the leadership of Jacob H. Schiff where “stereopticon views of Jewish life in the Holy Land which will be shown by Nissim Behard.”

1901: It was reported today that every year, for the last fifteen years, Charlotte Yonge has sent a manuscript to her publisher for a story of a “historical character written especially for boys and girls” including The Patriots of Palestine, a tale of the Maccabees.

1902: Birthdate of Polish native Dr. Monah L. Bialik, the holder of Ph.D from Columbia and the dean of the Yeshiva of Flatbush who was the husband of “the former Clara Telushkin” with whom he had two children

1902: The second annual exhibition that includes “the work of east side artists” and featuring “an exhibition of Jewish antiquities relating to Jewish rites and customs” is scheduled to come to an end this evening at the Education Alliance on East Broadway and Jefferson Street

1903: “Bishop Praises Jews” published today described a sermon by Bishop Satterlee of the Episcopal Church who said, “The Jews are preserving the home and family better than we Christians are doing” and that while “I do not know how to account for this, but I do know it to be fact.”

1903: “Twenty-five Jews were killed and 275 were wounded, may of them mortally, in anti-Semitic riots at Kishineff, the capital of Bessarabia” today “when a number of workmen organized an attack on the Jewish inhabitants.”

1904(5th of Iyar, 5664): Hannah Peixotto, the Louisville born daughter of Sarah and Mark Straus, the wife of Benjamin Franklin Peixotto who was the “United States Counsel General to Romania” and the mother of George da Madouro Peixotto; Frances (Fannie) Corinne Bloom; Mark Percy da Maduro Peixotto; Judith Eugenia Salzedo Morningstar; Beatrice Peixotto; Mabel Louise Peixotto; Florian (Frank) Peixotto; Victoria Maud Bronner and Irving Peixotto.

1904: It was reported that a large number of Jews were part of the cheering throng that greeted Vice Admiral Skrydloff, who is married to “a Jewess” as he stopped in St. Petersburg on his way to the Far East.

1905(15th of Nisan, 5665): As Russia confronted its defeat by the Japanese and the violence of the Russian Revolution, the Jews observe Pesach.

1905: In Dallas, Herbert Marcus, the founder of Neiman Marcus and Minnie Marcus gave birth to Harold Stanley Marcus who followed in his father’s footsteps.

1905: The Manchester Guardian published “The Aliens Bill: Some Prejudices Examined” by M.J. Landa.

1905: Birthdate of composer Nicholas “Slug” Brodszky, the native of Odessa who came to the United States in 1934 where he worked with lyricist Sammy Cahn and produced songs for numerous movies, the most famous which might have been “The Student Prince” and Love Me or Leave Me.”

1906: In Montreal Shlomo Chaim Caplan and Chaya Bluma Routtenberg gave birth to Yonah Ephraim “Jimmy” Caplan, the husband of Lena Herman and graduate of Yeshiva University who led a congregation in Astoria, NY.

1906: It was reported today that among the earliest contributors to the fund for the victims of the San Francisco Earthquake were “Half Bros. who gave $25, Morris Frankel who have $10 and Schoenfeld Company who gave $5.

1907(6th of Iyar, 5667): Parashat Tazria-Metzora

1907(6th of Iyar, 5667)): Thirty-eight-year-old Benedict Gimbel, the Philadelphia born son Fridoline and Adam Gimbel and husband of Birdie Loeb Gimbel with whom he had one child, Benedict Gimbel, Jr., who was part of the merchant family that created the department stores that bore the family name passed away today in Hoboken, NJ after slashing himself with pieces of broken glass.

1908: Birthdate of Yisrael Yeshayahu Sharabi, a native of Sa’dah, Yemen, who made Aliyah in 1929 and eventually became the fifth Speaker of the Knesset.

1909: Funeral services are scheduled to take place this afternoon for Edward Karmer who had died at the Jewish Hospital on April 18.

1909: Miss Ray Pearlman, “an agent of the Council of Jewish Women escorted unmarried Russian Jewish immigrant “Sarah Koten, the young nurse who shot and killed Dr. Martin W. Auspitz last June and who was released today under a suspended sentence” from the courtroom.

1910: Birthdate of New York native and NYU trained attorney Leo Isaksson who appeared to upset the political applecart when he was elected to House of Representatives as a member of the American Labor Party in what appeared to be a leg up for Henry Wallace’s bid to win the White House.

1911(22nd of Nisan, 5671): Eighth Day of Pesach

1911(22nd of Nisan,5671): Sixty-one year old Minsk native and author Henry Iliowizi, the teacher in Alliance Israélite Universelle’s “school at Tetuan, Morocco from 1877 to 1880” who came to the United States where he “was minister of a congregation at Harrisonburg, Virginia; from 1880 to 1888, rabbi of the Congregation Sha'aré Tob in Minneapolis; and from 1888 to 1900, of the Congregation Adath Jeshurun in Philadelphia” passed away today.

1911: Birthdate of New York native and NYU trained lawyer Jacob Mishler who served as “a United States district judge of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York from 1960 to 2004 and its Chief Judge from 1969 to 1980.”

1912: Birthdate of David Ginsburg, “a liberal lawyer and longtime Washington insider who helped found the Americans for Democratic Action and led the presidential commission on race relations whose report, in 1968, warned that the United States was ‘moving toward two societies — one black, one white, separate and unequal.’”

1912: In the Bronx, a memorial service is to be held at the Montefiore Congregation for the crew and passengers who died when the Titanic sank.

1912: Guy Zinn, an outfielder with the New York Highlanders (later re-named the NY Yankees) “scored the first run ever at Boston’s Fenway Park” today.

1912: A banquet celebrating the fifth anniversary of the Free Synagogue hosted by Rabbi Stephen Wise was postponed as public mourning for those who lost their lives on the Titanic continues.

1912: Birthdate of Gertrude Erika Perlmann, the Czechoslovakian-born U.S. biochemist.

1913: A general strike by 4,000 kosher bakers began today when 1,000 of them quit work in Manhattan, Brooklyn and Brownsville.  The strike had originally been scheduled to start on April 29. The early strike date really was of little significance since the bakers would have quite working tomorrow any way do the fact that Passover starts tomorrow evening.

1913: Rabbi Joseph Stolz is scheduled to deliver a sermon on “Walking in the Statutes of the Nations at the Isaiah Temple at Vincennes and 45th Street.

1913: This morning at Temple Sinai, on Chicago’s south-side, Dr. Emil G. Hirsch is scheduled to on “The Ethics of Judaism and the Ethics of Christianity” which is “the concluding lecture in the series on the ‘Relations of Liberal Judaism to its Neighbors.’”

1913: This afternoon, Dr. Emil G. Hirsch will deliver the sermon at the People’s Synagogue which meets every Sunday at Chicago’s Ziegfeld Theatre. (Editor’s Note: As you can see from these entries, this was a period in which Reform Judaism was making a concerted effort to replace Saturday morning services with Sunday morning services—a move which they thought would improve attendance and participation.)

1913: Morris Siegel, known to his friends and family as “Morris the Apple Peddler” attended the Brit Milah today for three boys – his three sons all of whom were born eight days ago.  The crowd of well-wishers grew even larger when the entire class of his 13 year old son Harry arrived at the event.

1914: Investment banker and art collector Maurice Wertheim, the son Jacob and Hanna Wertheim, and his first wife Alma Morgenthau gave birth to Anne Rebe Wertheim, the younger sister of historian Barbara Tuchman.

1914: Re-argument of Gompers (as in Samuel Gompers) versus the United States began today at the U.S. Supreme Court.

1915: Birthdate of South African-born, American psychologist Joseph Wolpe.

1915: “It was announced” today “in a letter received from Counselor Robert Lansing” of the U.S. State Department “by The Jewish Daily Warheit of New York” that “the State Department in Washington has telegraphed the American Consul at Warsaw” seeking a full report on “the severe sufferings of the Jews in Russian Poland.”

1915(6th of Iyar, 5675): Seventy-two-year-old Nathan Gratz, a well-known New York lawyer passed away today. He was the son of Jonathan and Rebecca Gratz (Moses) Nathan. “Mr. Nathan graduated from Columbia College in 1861. He engaged in practice in 1864 and was well known in Democratic political circles, clubs, and charitable societies. He was a member of New York law Institute, Columbia Alumni, and the New York Genealogical and Biographical Society.”

1915: Birthdate of journalist Israel Epstein.

1916(17th of Nisan, 5676): Third Day of Pesach

1916:” A ‘Life for a Life’ campaign in which 500,000 Jewish women in the United States are expected to raise $1,000,000 a month for the needy Jews in Europe was started by the Women’s Proclamation Committee of the Central Jewish Relief Committee at the Astor Hotel today.”

1916: Birthdate of Wiera Vera Gran, the Polish born Jewish singer who first performed under the name Sylvia Green and who became the center of a controversy surrounding her survival of the Holocaust.

1917(28th of Nisan, 5677): Eighty-six-year-old civil engineer Sir John Howard, the husband of Georgina Paver and the father o Alice, Rosina, Frederick, Esther, Leah and Howard Hannah who “was involved in building the Palace Pier, Brighton, construction of railways in Andover, Colne Valley, Andover and Redgbridge, Bognor, Midhurst and Mid-Sussex” and who was affiliated with the West London, Brighton and Edinburgh Synagogues passed away today after which he was buried in the Jewish Cemetery in Brighton.

1917: Two days after he had passed away, forty-seven-year-old David Myer Petrofsky was buried in the “Plashet Jewish Cemetery” in London today.

1917:  As the Russian military position continued to deteriorate and Russian soldiers demanded immediate peace with the Germans, mutinies broke out.  In one instance an artillery officer named Khaust who had demanded that his fellow Russians lay down their arms was saved from an angry assembly of soldiers by a Jewish soldier known simply as Rom who intervened on their behalf.

1917(28th of Nisan, 5677): During WW I, Lt. Max Oster was killed at the Battle of Aisne.

1917(28th of Nisan, 5677): During WW I, Lt Sydney Fine, 2/5 S Lancers, the son of Jacob Fine of Edgbaston, was killed today.

1918(8th of Iyar, 5678): Parashat Achrei Mot – Kedoshim

1918: Rabbi Krass is scheduled to deliver a sermon on “Hebraism and Humanity” at Central Synagogue on Lexington Avenue.

1918: Rabbi Silverman is scheduled to deliver a sermon on “Revival of Jewish Culture” at Temple Emanu-El.

1918: Rabbi M.H. Harris is scheduled to deliver a sermon on “The Loaf that Fed the Multitude” at Temple Israel of Harlem.

1918: “Banquet to Jewish Soldiers” published today described plans for an upcoming banquet being hosted by the Jewish Board of Welfare and the Young Men’s Hebrew Association under the chairmanship of Benjamin Natal for the benefit the young Jewish men who are about to leave for Fort Dix to begin serving in the U.S. Army.

1919: Dr. J. Leon Magnes spoke at the groundbreaking ceremonies for the new Bronx Jewish Hospital during which $60,000 was pledged toward the building fund.

1919:  The public was invited to attend the entertainment of the children of the Marks Nathan Jewish Orphan Home during Chol-Homaed Pesach.

1919: In Manhattan, Tillie Gold, of Gold’s Horseradish fame and her husband gave birth to her oldest Morris Gold “who helped make” Gold’s a household name.

1919: The Jewish Literary Society meeting at Zion Temple is scheduled to discuss The Religion of Canaan by Mary Erenberg and The Religion of Babylon and Syria by William Elfenbaum.

1919: “The young women who worked as telephone operators at New England Telephone and Telegraph walked off the job. One of the strike leaders was Rose Finkelstein, a young Jewish worker, who had emigrated with her family as a young child from Kiev, Russia.”  (As reported by Jewish Women’s Archives)

1920: “Chaim Weizmann arrived at the Hotel Royal in San Remo, two days after the San Remo conference had convened.”  Still smarting from the failure of the British to stop the riots aimed at the Jews of Jerusalem that had broken out earlier in the month, the usually reserved Weizmann, congratulates Phillip Kerr, Lloyd George’s private secretary, on the “first pogrom ever conducted under the British flag.”  The unusual outburst took place in the hotel lobby, a public denunciation that caught the British leader off guard and led to cooling off period for the Zionist leader.

1920:  In the aftermath of World War I, Palestine ceased to be a part of the defeated Ottoman Empire (now Turkey).  The League of Nations made Palestine a British Mandate which meant recognition of the terms of the Balfour Declaration.

1921: Birthdate of Marcos Moshinsky the Ukrainian born Mexican physicist who won the Prince of Asturias Prize for Scientific and Technical Investigation in 1988 and the UNESCO Science Prize in 1997. He passed away in 2009 at the age of 87.

1922(22nd of Nisan, 5682): Eight Day of Pesach

1922: Philadelphia Athletics 2nd baseman Heinie Scheer appeared in his first major league baseball game.

1923(4th of Iyar, 5683): D. Falk Duschoff passed away today in Detroit.

1923(4th of Iyar, 5683): Eighty-one-year-old German born Philadelphia lawyer Mayer Sulzberger, a life-long Republican who served as a judge and was active in numerous Jewish organizations including the Jewish Theological Seminary and Dropsie College.

 1923: Birthdate of pioneering statistician and psychologist Jacob Cohen. (Editor’s Note – I do not have a clue as to what he did but it was obviously brilliant.)

1923: Rabbi Aaron David Burack, the Lithuanian born son of Chaim Natan (Nassen) Burack and Bashe (Bessie) Gitel (Gibberman) Burack and his wife Esther Burack gave birth to Dr. Bernard Burack

1924(16th of Nisan, 5684): Second Day of Pesach

1924: “The Woman on the Jury,” in Arthur Lubin played the role of a juror was released today in the United States.

1924: Birthdate of Morris Edward Chafetz, the son of Jewish immigrants who played an important role in changing the public perception of alcoholism from social crime or personal failing to a disease requiring treatment. ´ (As reported by William Grimes)

1925: “Speedy repeal of the present immigration law "in favor of a measure embodying more accurately the unbiased findings of science," was urged here today by Adolf Kraus of Chicago, President of the Independent Order of B'nai B'rith, in his annual address to the Grand Lodge convention of that body, in the Ritz-Carlton Hotel.”

1926: At luncheon at the Hotel Biltmore, Mrs. Alexander Kohut told members of the Women’s Division of the United Jewish Campaign about “the conditions she witnessed on her trip to Eastern Europe and urge the newly appointed committee heads to spare no effort toward raising the $500,000 which the women have pledged as their share of the New York quota.”

1926: “Sir Leo Levison, President of the International Hebrew Christian Alliance, arrived in New York today from London on the White Star Liner Majestic to attend the national conference of the American Hebrew Christian Alliance at Buffalo” which is scheduled to begin on April 25.

1926: Warner Brothers, which was owned by the four Warner brothers and Western Electric announced the creation of Vitaphone, a process to add sound to film. Vitaphone would be the sound system used in the making of “The Jazz Singer,” the first talking motion picture.

1927(18th of Nisan, 5687): Fourth Day of Pesach

1927: “Counsel for Henry Ford and the Dearborn Publishing Company, defendants in Aaron Sapiro's suit for $1,000,000 as libel damages, filed today with Federal Judge Raymond their application for a mistrial.”

1928(30th of Nisan, 5688): Rosh Chodesh Iyar

1928(30th of Nisan, 5688): Seventy-year-old Dr. Samuel Weszel, a native of Rotterdam who was the Chief Rabbi of the Ashkenazic community in Bosnia passed away today in Bosnia.

1928: According to a prediction made tonight in Philadelphia by Rabbi Max D. Klein, local chairman of the United Palestine Appeal, “within a week or ten days Wall Street will hear that two of its banks have completed a joint loan of three million dollars to the World Zionist Organization for use in the rehabilitation of Palestine.

1928: “The tenth anniversary of the He’Chaultz Palestine Pioneer organization was marked at a meeting” held in Paris.

1929(10th of Nisan, 5689): Parsahat Metzora and Shabbat HaGadol observed for the last time before the Great Depression

1930(22nd of Nisan, 5690): Eighth Day of Pesach.

1930: The Jewish Theatrical Guild is scheduled to hold an open meeting this afternoon at the Bijou Theatre where S.L. Rothafel will be the guest of the honor.

1931(3rd of Iyar, 5691): Sixty-two-year-old San Francisco attorney Henry George Washington Dinkelspiel, the Suisan, CA born son of Meier "Moses" Dinkelspiel and Lena Dinkelspiel, the husband of Estelle Dinkelspiel and N.N. Dinkelspiel and father of Bette Leve, John Dinkelspiel and Martin Jerrold Dinkelspiel who followed in his father’s footsteps to become a leading member of the California bar, passed away today.

1931: “The Outsider,” film treatment of the novel of the same named directed by Harry Lachman who co-authored the script was released in the United Kingdom today.

1931: Plans for a charity dinner to be held on April 22 at the Hotel Biltmore “under the auspices of the New York Campaign for the Relief of Jews in Eastern Europe were announced” today “ by Albert Ottinger, chairman of the local committee.”

1932(14th of Nisan, 5692): Fast of the First Born is observed for the last time under the Presidency of Herbert Hoover and in pre-Hitler Germany.

1932: “Four witnesses testified today that they had given money to the Rabbi Samuel Buchler, lawyer, former city official and former Jewish chaplain at Sing Sing, in futile efforts to bring alien relatives into this country.”

1933: “Adolf Busch, the German violinist, has just resigned his part in the forthcoming Brahms centennial celebration in Hamburg because permission to participate was refused to the pianist, Rudolf Serkin, because of his Jewish origin.”

1934: “For the first time in its history of more than two hundred years” Yale University is the site of a conference of Christians and Jews, sponsored by five of the school’s “religious clubs” scheduled to open this afternoon with the theme of “Common Citizenship.”

1935(17th of Nisan, 5695): Third day of Pesach

1935(17th of Nisan, 5695): In Pelham, NY, merchant and philanthropist Philip Pearlman passed away today.

1935: “Little Mother,” a comedy directed Henry Koster, produced by Jose Pasternak and starring Otto Wallburg was released in Austria today.

1936: As tension continue to rise amid reports of plans for further attacks by Arabs, “all the Jews in the Beersheba district have been moved to Jerusalem in trucks under police escort.”

1936: Jews repelled an Arab attack in Petach Tikvah. This attack was part of the Arab Uprising that lasted from 1936 until 1939.  The Arabs aim was to put an end to the dream of a Jewish homeland.  While they failed militarily, they were handed victory by a British decision to virtually put an end to Jewish land purchases and immigration.  This effectively slammed the door shut on the Jews of Europe on the eve of the Shoah.   Petach Tikvah or "Gateway of Hope" was originally founded by religious Jewish pioneers who had been living in Jerusalem.  What would eventually become a city, was a collection of mud huts built by 26 families on malaria infested piece of land seven miles east of what would one day become Tel Aviv.  Petach Tikvah took its name from a verse in Hosea "And I will give her...the valley of Achor for a gateway of Hope (2:17)."  The moshav would be abandoned for a brief period and then re-started with support from Baron Rothschild.  Petach Tikvah became a model and inspiration for the moshav movement.  Unfortunately, Petach Tikvah is no stranger to Arab violence.  During the 1920's, the defense of Petach Tikvah had helped to defeat an earlier Arab attempt to destroy the efforts by Jews to resettle and rehabilitate land that had been designated as “the Jewish Home.’ In the latest Arab Uprising, Petach Tikvah has been the scene of a suicide bombing in 2002 and the scene of a thwarted bombing in 2003. 

1936(28th of Nisan, 5696): Zvi Dannenberg died today of wounds suffered on April 15 when he and Israel Khazahn were attacked by Arabs as they traveled from Nablus to Tulkarm.

1936: Bronislaw Huberman, founder and organizer of the Palestine Symphony Orchestra announced that Arturo Toscanini has decided to include music by Mendelssohn on the first program he will conduct with the symphony. There is an element of political protest in this announcement since Mendelssohn has been banned by the Nazis.

1936(28th of Nisan, 5695): “In an attack in the Shapira quarter, a Jewish suburb of Jaffa, Arabs killed two Jews and wounded several others” including “a Jewish youth riding a bicycle in Jaffa” who “was beaten so severely that he died almost instantly.”

1936: “The Yemenite Jewish quarter outside of Tel Aviv” was destroyed by fire set by Arabs.

1936: Part of a mob of three hundred Haurani Arabs “broke into the home of a Jewish family in Manshieh quarter and killed the father and injured the mother who was transported by the police along with their three children to Hadassah Hospital.

1937: B'nai B'rith was banned in Nazi Germany because of individual members spreading "communist propaganda.

1937: After moving its meeting that had been scheduled to start on April 13 in London, the Zionist General Council is scheduled to meet today in Jerusalem.

1938: Despite bomb throwing which has become a daily occurrence in Jerusalem, an enthusiastic crowd filled Jerusalem’s Edison Hall for Toscanini’s fifth concert Aprof the season with the Palestine Orchestra.

1938: German planes fly over Austria on Hitler’s birthday dropping tiny Swastikas.  This is the “new” Austria after the Anschluss which had taken place in March of 1938.

1938: The Palestine Post reported that for the third night in succession bombs had been thrown in the center of Jerusalem, injuring Edwin Eisler, 18, and Banu Baland, 35. Forty "illegal" Jewish immigrants who had been in Palestine for many years, declared a hunger strike in order to persuade the mandate's authorities to change their status from "illegal" immigrants whom the courts failed to deport, to that of recognized permanent residents, so that they could bring here their families from abroad.

1939:  On Hitler's fiftieth birthday, all Catholic churches in Greater Germany hoisted the swastika in celebration.

1939: “The Four Feathers,” a film version of the novel by the same name, directed by Zoltan Korda and produced by Alexander Korda was released today in the United Kingdom.

1939: The Wirtschafts- und Verwaltungshauptamt (WVHA; Economy and Administration Main Office) was upgraded. It was concerned with SS economic matters, particularly at concentration camps.

1939: At a meeting of the British Cabinet’s Palestine Committee, Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain, ever the appeaser, stressed that it of ‘immense importance’ with regard to British strategy ‘to have the Moslem world with us.  If we must offend one side, let us offend the Jews rather than the Arabs.’ This pronouncement was a complete violation of the Balfour Declaration and the terms of the Mandate.  It set the stage for the effective closing of Palestine to Jewish immigration in May of 1939; a policy that bought death for the Jews but failed to win the goodwill of the Arabs.  

1940: In the U.K., Russian Jewish immigrants and longtime residents of the British Isles,“Abraham Samuel and Rosalie Wander” gave birth to MIchelene Samuels who gained famed as Michelen Vicor and Michelene Wandor, the author of Music of the Prophets, the 2007 work that “commemorates the 350th anniversary of the Jews return to England in 1657.”

1941: Philippe de Rothschild was “released from Vichy custody” today following which he went to England and joined the Free French under Charles de Gaulle.

1941: Birthdate of New York native, author and Distinguished Professor of history Blanche Wiesen Cook.

1941: German newspapers in Greece come out blaming Jews for ruining Germany after World War I.   During this same period in April, the Greek newspaper New Europe wrote in capital letters “DEATH TO THE JEWS.” The paper reported that the Jews were the cause of economic problems in Germany. Levy stated the Greek paper called for the destruction of the "Jewish race once and for all."

1942: The Battle for Moscow comes to an “end.”  The war in the East will grind on.  But thanks to the gritty, desperate defense of the Soviet capital, the German Army has been stopped and what was to have been a lightning war turns into a war of attrition.  As bad as the Holocaust was, defeat at Moscow would have made it even worse.  The Soviet victory here, along with other Soviet victories later in the war caused General Douglas McArthur (of all people) to declare that the Red Army was the Hope of the World.

1942: “Frank L. Weil was re-elected president of the National Jewish Welfare Board, and Judge Irving Lehman was re-elected honorary president at the Twenty-Fifth annual conference of the J.W.B. which concluded its three-day session today” in New York City. (As reported by JTA)

1942: At Mauthausen, “forty-eight people were shot at two-minute intervals as a present to Hitler on his birthday.”

1942: “Thirty French hostages – “Communists, Jews and sympathizers” – were executed today by the German military command near Roden in reprisal for the bombing last week of a military train in which a large number of German soldiers were killed.” (As reported by JTA)

1942: At a birthday banquet for Hitler in East Prussia, Hermann Göring announced that he was responsible for the Reichstag fire of February 27, 1933, that set off Nazi reprisals against purported Communist subversion.

1942: As part of the exercises commemorating the 1,000th anniversary of the medieval scholar Saadia Gaon, the Jewish Theological Seminary of New York will confer honorary degrees on three modern educators this evening at the University of Chicago.

1942: “More than a thousand prominent educational and religious leaders gathered tonight at the University of Chicago’s Mandel Hall at a convocation called by the Jewish Theological Seminary to honor Rabbi Saadia Gaon, the thousandth anniversary of whose death is being celebrated this year. President Robert M. Hutchins of the University of Chicago presided at the meeting.” (As reported by JTA)

1943(15th of Nisan, 5703): Pesach

1943: On the second day of Pesach, the Warsaw uprising continued for a second day.  The ghetto is bombarded with fire frp, mortars and machine guns. Germans kill all the sick in the Czyste hospital. Then they set the hospital on fire. Jewish resistance was stubborn and organized.  The Nazis, who had swept France in a mere six weeks, could not believe that the Jews of all people were providing this kind of a fight.  According to one account, some of the Jews could not believe they were doing it either. 

1944: “A citation of the New York Round Table of the National Conference of Christians and Jews was presented tonight to former Supreme Court Justice Joseph M. Proskauer, president of the American Jewish Committee, as "a valiant fighter in the cause of goodwill" in ceremonies broadcast from station WHN.”

1944: While it is estimated that more one million Jews are serving the forces of the “United Nations” as of today “more than fifty members of Parliament have signed a motion to come before the House of Commons asking that facilities be granted for the formation of a Jewish army under British or United Nations command to fight on any required battlefield and to composed of volunteers not a present liable to compulsory military service.”

1945(7th of Iyar, 5705): During the night 20 children and at least 28 adults were hanged at Bullenhuser Damn, one of the satellite camps of Neuengamme. The Bullenhuser Damm Memorial is dedicated to the memory of these children, who were subjected to medical experiments in the Neuengamme concentration camp before being murdered, to the 4 prisoners who cared for them, and to 24 unidentified Soviet prisoners.(Based on information supplied by the Wiener Library)

1945: Jerusalem’s District Commissioner, James Huey Hamilton Pollock, met with Arab leaders in an attempt to reach a solution as to how Jerusalem should be governed.  Jewish leaders had accepted a British proposal that would have the position of Mayor rotate among each of the three main religious groups in the city.  The Arabs had maintained that the mayor must be Muslim.  The compromise would allow for a partition plan. 

1945: Prime Minister Churchill telegraphs his wife who is in the Soviet Union stating that “Here we are all shocked by the most horrible revelations of German cruelty in the concentration camps.”

1945: Ernst Hess, who was Hitler’s commanding officer during World War I ended his work as a “forced laborer’ for plumber named George Grau.

1946(19th of Nisan, 5706): Shabbat shel Pesach

1946: The Anglo-American Committee of Inquiry completed its report, urging the British to end the land purchase restrictions imposed on the Jews as part of the 1939 White Paper and to grant 100,000 Palestine certificates immediately.  The British rejected the proposal, refused to allow immigration on anything approaching that scale. 

1946: “Five Yemenite Jews were killed when a three-inch shell exploded…in Nathanya” a town halfway between Tel Aviv and Haifa.

1946: Birthdate of “Israeli-born American pianist Mordecai Shehori, the native of Tel Aviv who “made his New York debut after winning the 1974 Jeunesses Musicales Competition.”

1946: Twenty-eight-year-old Brooklyn-born southpaw Herbert “Lefty” Karpel pitched in the second and final game of his two game career with the New York Yankees.

1946: “Devotion” a biopic directed by Curtis Bernhardt was released in the United States today.

1947: Seventy-six-year-old Christian X of Denmark, who fourteen years earlier almost to the day had attended the ceremonies marking the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Grand Synagogue and who according to a popular myth donned the Yellow Star of David during the Nazi occupation (something he wrote about in his diaries” passed away today.

1948: On the eve of Pesach, "the last food convoy after Operation Nachson, made up of some 300 trucks brought provisions to Jerusalem.

1948: A convoy that included Prime Minister David Ben Gurion set out from Tel Aviv to the besieged city of Jerusalem.  Ben Gurion wanted to spend Pesach in Jerusalem with the beleaguered defenders as a way of raising morale.  The trip was extremely dangerous because the Arabs controlled the high ground on both sides of the highway and had successfully beaten back several other such attempts.  While Ben Gurion, who was traveling in one of the lead vehicles, made it through, the rest of the convoy came under heavy attack and was forced to turn back after suffering heavy casualties.  This was only one of the many battles fought to open the road to Jerusalem.  Long after the war was over, travelers on the modern-four lane highway from the coast to Jerusalem could see the burned-out hulks of the Jewish vehicles that serve as constant reminder of the price the Jewish people paid for Jerusalem.

1948(11th of Nisan, 5708): Twenty Jewish soldiers were killed today when “a second attempt was made to” take Metzudat Koach, a Tegart fort built by Solel Boneh during the British Mandate” that “was a key observation point on the Naftali heights, overlooking the Hula Valley” which had been seized by the Arabs thus threatening the existence of kibbutzim in the Upper Galilee.

1948(11th of Nisan, 5708): Five members of Haganah were killed and twenty-four were wounded during a day long fight “at Deir Ayoub, just short of the gorges of Bab El Wad” with Arabs who were trying to keep a convoy from reaching Jerusalem which was under siege that was a violation of international law.

1948: “Arab throngs turned out at Amman to welcome The Grand Mufti, Haj Amin el Husseini” prior to his meeting with King Abdullah of Trans-Jordan who has intimated that his Arab Legion would soon join armies from Arab nations in an invasion of Palestine.

1948: “In Jerusalem armed Arabs held up a postal trucked, for the driver to drive to the Garden of Gethsemane and stole seventy-six bags of foreign, domestic and army mail.

1948: A group of Jewish veterans who had had served with the British Army during World War II drove a convoy to twenty-four armored trucks to the edge of the Negev where they founded “a new settlement called Brur Hayal.

1949(21st of Nisan, 5709): Seventh Day of Pesach

1949(21st of Nisan, 5709): Ben Spector, an ironworker from Russia and the father of famous popular musician Phil Spector passed away today.

1949: Twenty-five-year-old outfielder Cal Abrams plays in his first game with the Brooklyn Dodgers.

1949: Publication of The Brave Bulls which would become a 1951 film directed by Robert Rossen.

1950(3rd of Iyar, 5710): Yom HaAtma’ut

1950: During a debate in the House of Commons Prime Minister Atlee’s Labor government announced that it would continue to refuse to sell arms to Israel while continuing to sell arms to Egypt, Iraq and Jordan.  According to sources in Tel Aviv, the British have said they would consider sales of weapons to Israel if she reaches a full settlement with the Arab states.  No such pre-condition has been attached to sales to the Arab states.

1951(14th of Nisan, 5711): Erev Pesach and Erev Shabbat

1951: “When I Grow Up” produced by Sam Spiegel and with music by Jerome Moross was released today in the United States.

1951(14th of Nisan, 5711): Sixty-one-year-old David Stanley Dreyfus, the Pine Bluff born son of Isaac and Bertha Simon Dreyfus and the brother of Ruth, Hugo, H. Artie and Jerome Dreyfus passed away today after which he was buried in the Congregation Anshe Emeth Cemetery in Pine Bluff, AR.

1951: Funeral services are scheduled to be held in Jefferson City, MO for Etta Amolsky Schatzkey, the Lulling. TX born daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Isaac Amolsky and the wife of Albert Schatzkey whom she married in 1900 and with whom she lived in Houston before moving to Jefferson Cit.

1952: NBC broadcast the final episode of “The Big Show” a radio variety show written by Goodman Ace of Easy Aces who hired Selma Diamond to work on the scripts with him.

1953(5th of Iyar, 5713): Yom HaAtzma'ut observed

1954(17th of Nisan, 5714): Third Day of Pesach

1954: “The Golden Apple,” a Jerome Moros musical that had opened “Off-Broadway” in March opened on Broadway today at the Alvin Theatre.

1955: A production of “Guys and Dolls” “starring Walter Matthau as Nathan Detroit” opened today.

1956: A subpoena duces tecum was served today on Mauricio Hochschild.

1957(19th of Nisan, 5717): Shabbat Shel Pesach

1957: U.S. premiere of “The Spirit of St. Louis” directed by Billy Wilder who also co-authored the script with music by Franz Waxman.

1958(30th of Nisan, 5718): Rosh Chodesh Iyar

1960: “From A to Z,” “a musical revue with a book by Woody Allen…opened on Broadway” today at the Plymouth Theater.

1961(4th of Iyar, 5721): Yom HaAtzma’ut

1961: Israel is scheduled to hold military parade in Jerusalem, that despite assurance from the Ambassador Arthur Lourie will not include any aircraft or weapons containing ammunition, the Jordanians have alleged will “international peace and security.”

1963: Final performance of at the Royal Theatre of “Lord Prego,” written by S. N. Behran and for which Kal Bernstein serve as “general press representative.”

1963: CBS broadcast the final episode of “Have Gun – Will Travel” that included an opening theme composed by Bernard Herrmann and over its six year history included episodes written by Bruce Geller and Irving Wallace as well as appearances by Martin Balsam, Sydney Pollack, Norma Crane, Suzanne Pleshette, Werner Klemperer and Dyan Cannon.

1965: U.S. premiere of “The Pawnbroker” the film version of the novel by Edward Lewis Wallant, directed by Sidney Lumet and filmed by cinematographer Boris Kaufman.

1965: In Montreal, architect Moshe Safdie and his wife gave birth to “Canadian-American-Israeli playwright and screenwriter Oren Safdi who whose works included “Jews & Jesus, a musical that satirizes the naiveté of young Jews, half-Jews, Christians who date Jews and vice versa, while questioning the place of religion in this unfettered age.”

1967: Birthdate of Mike Portnoy, drummer in the progressive metal band Dream Theatre.

1968(22nd of Nisan, 5728): Eighth Day of Pesach and Shabbat

1968: After 598 performances, the curtain came down on Woody Allen’s “Don’t Drink the Water.”

1970(14th of Nisan, 5730):Ta'anit Bechorot; Erev Pesach

1970(14th of Nisan, 5730): Forty-nine-year-old Poet and translator Paul Celan passed away.

 1970: Bruno Kreisky became the first Socialist and the first Jew to serve as Chancellor of Austria.

1970: Pini Nahmani, an Israeli pilot being held in a Damascus prison, celebrated a Seder made possible by two Haggadot and some Matzah crumbs sent by the Chief Rabbi of Zurich. 

1971: Barbra Streisand recorded "We've Only Just Begun."

1972(6th of Iyar, 5732): Eighty-six-year-old Isidor Posner, the husband of Ida Weinstein Posner and the father of Marcy, Rhoda and Irving Posner passed away today after which he was buried at Evergreen Cemetery in Lansing, Michigan.

1973(18th of Nisan, 5733): Fourth Day of Pesach

1973(18th of Nisan, 5733): Seventy-four-year-old encomiast Theodore N. Beckman, the Bessarabia born son of Pearl Treistman and Nahum Backman, the holder of a Ph.D. from the Ohio State University where he became a Professor of Marketing and husband of Esther G. Society who also served “as the faculty adviser of the OSU Menorah Society and a member of the advisory board of Hillel passed away today,

1974: South African Jewish professional association footballer Martin Cohen was part of the White XI that played their black counterparts today “in a racially charged match at Rand Stadium. After initially going down 1-0 to the black side (the goal was called off-side by referee Wally Turner), Cohen scored a crucial goal before Neil Roberts put the game away.”

1975: Larry Blyden, a practicing Jew from Houston born Ivan Lawrence Blieden, co-hosted the telecast of the Tony Awards.

1976: Paula Hyman spoke about the history of Jewish women in America on New York radio station WEVD.

1977(2nd of Iyar, 5737): Yom HaZikaron

1977: "Annie Hall" a comedy directed and written by Woody Allen co-starring Paul Simon and Janet Margolin was released in the United States, a month after premiering at the Los Angeles Film Fesitval.

1978: The Jerusalem Post reported that Yitzhak Navon was elected the fifth president of the State of Israel on his 57th birthday. The minister of defense, Ezer Weizmann, was expected to leave for Cairo in another bid to renew the stalled Israeli-Egyptian peace negotiations. In Washington, efforts were made to set the stage for another, possibly more promising, summit between Prime Minister Menachem Begin and US president, Jimmy Carter.

1979: U.S. premiere of “Dawn of the Dead” co-starring Gaylen Ross who would later produce the acclaimed documentary “Killing Kasztner,”

1980(4th of Iyar, 5740): Yom HaZikaron

1981(16th of Nisan, 5741): Second Day of Pesach; First Day of the Omer under President Reagan.

1981(16th of Nisan, 5741): New York City native and CCNY grad Sol Rafel, “the executive director of Bronx House, the largest Jewish community center the borough” who had two daughters – Judy and Ellen – with his wife Ruth passed away today

1982(27th of Nisan, 5742): Yom HaShoah

1986: An Irishwoman arrested in connection with an attempt to blow up a crowded Israeli airliner was freed tonight after two days of questioning with no charges brought against her, the police said. Anne-Marie Murphy, 32 years old, was arrested at London's Heathrow Airport carrying explosives on Thursday as she was about to board an El Al flight to Tel Aviv. She carried a bag containing about 10 pounds of explosives stashed in a false bottom. The police said she may have been duped into taking the bomb onto the plane. Detectives are still questioning her fiancé, Nezar Hindawi, a 35-year-old Jordanian who was arrested on Friday.

1986: World famous pianist Vladimir Horowitz performed in his Russian homeland. A non-observant Jew, this performance was one of his last before he went into his final retirement. "It's better to make your own mistakes than to copy someone else's." "My future is in my past and my past is in my present. I must now make the present my future."

1987: Two Israeli soldiers and three Palestinian guerrillas were killed today in a shootout after the Palestinians cut through a Lebanon border fence and crossed into northern Israel, an Israeli Army spokesman said. The Israeli radio said three Palestinian guerrillas who slipped past Israeli troops in southern Lebanon and crossed the border near the Menara kibbutz ''were wiped out,'' but not before they had killed the two Israeli soldiers who had tracked them to their hiding place in an apple orchard 500 yards inside Israel. Al Fatah, Yasir Arafat's faction of the Palestine Liberation Organization, took credit for the operation.

1988(3r of Iyar, 5748) Yom HaZikaron observed

1988: Bernard A. Friedman began serving as “Judge of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan” today.

1989(15th of Nisan, 5749): Pesach is observed for the first time during the Presidency of George H.W. Bush.

1989: In Hammersmith London, Bernard and Flora Sternberg gave birth to actress Roxy Sternberg.

1990(25th of Nisan, 5750): Seventy-one-year-old Justice Irene Finkelstein, the daughter of Aaron Rushovich and Sonia Chatzkelowitz Rushovich, the wife of David Finkelstein and Maurice Finkelstein with she gave birth to Arlene Dawn Joel passed away today.

1991(6th of Iyar, 5751: Movie director Don Siegel passed away.  Born in Chicago in 1912 and educated in England, Siegel had a long and storied career. In 1945, two shorts he directed, Hitler Lives? and A Star in the Night, won Academy Awards, which launched his career as a feature director. Among his long list of film credits were a series of Clint Eastwood films including Coogan’s Bluff, Two Mules for Sister Sarah and the classic Dirty Harry.

1993: At a solemn outdoor ceremony tonight at the place where several hundred poorly armed Jews battled the Nazis 50 years ago, the leaders of Poland and Israel hailed the valor of the uprising and called for a new beginning in the often difficult relationship between Jews and Poles.

1994: “Paul Touvier, the first French citizen tried for crimes against humanity, was sentenced today to life in prison for ordering the execution of seven Jews during World War II.”

1995(20th of Nisan, 5755): Fifty-two-year-old, “Jacob Shaham, among the world's leading theoretical astrophysicists in the study of neutron stars and professor of physics at Columbia” passed away today.

1997: The New York Times featured reviews of Rabin: Our Life, His Legacy by Leah Rabin and The Boys: The Untold Story of 732 Young Concentration Camp Survivors by Martin Gilbert.

1999(4th of Iyar, 5759): Yom HaZikaron

1999(4th of Iyar, 5759): Eighty-four-year-old Baroness Bethsabée de Rothschild passed away in Tel Aviv

2000(15th of Pesach, 5760): Pesach

2000: In Shanghai, 100 Jews attended Pesach services at Ohel Rachel Synagogue.

2000: “A Story Still Painful After Repeated” published today provides a review the Robert Myers’ “The Lynching of Leo Frank which is another in a list of less than successful attempts to capture the events surrounding the events that took place in pre-WW I Georgia.

2001(27th of Nisan, 5761): Ninety-two-year-old Avigdor HaKohen Miller passed away today.

2001: Alejandro Mayorkas, the Cuban born Jew and Loyola Marymount University trained attorney completed his service as the United States Attorney for the Central District of California.

2002(8th of Iyar, 5762): Border Policeman St.-Sgt. Uriel Bar-Maimon, 21 of Ashkelon was killed in an exchange of fire near the Erez industrial park in the northern Gaza Strip. Israeli forces pursued the Palestinian gunman and killed him. An explosive belt was found on his body. The Fatah Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades claimed responsibility.

2002(8th of Iyar, 5762): Sgt. Maj. Nir Krichman, 22 of Hadera, was killed in an exchange of gunfire, when IDF forces entered the village of Asira a-Shamaliya, north of Nablus, to arrest known Hamas terrorists.

2003: The New York Times included reviews of books by Jewish authors and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including recently released paperback versions of “Sunday Jews, by Hortense Calisher in which she “explores the disparate fortunes of an extended Jewish family living on the Upper West Side after World War II” and “Be My Knife” by David Grossman.

2003(18th of Nisan, 5763): IDF photographer Cpl. Lior Ziv, 19, of Holon, was killed and three other soldiers were wounded during an operation to destroy a Hamas smuggling tunnel in Rafah, in the Gaza Strip.

2003(18th of Nisan, 5763): Biophysicist, Sir Bernard Katz passed away. Sir Bernard Katz was born in Germany in 1911.  He fled to Great Britain when the Nazis came to power.  Katz was noted for his work on nerve biochemistry.  He shared the Nobel Prize in physiology or medicine in 1970 with Julius Axelrod and Ulf von Euler. He was knighted in 1970.

2004: The Public Law Department of the Buenos Aires University School of Law and the International Raoul Wallenberg Foundation organized and presented The International Seminar "Diplomacy and the Holocaust.”

2005: While some controversy swirls around reports of Pope Benedict XVI’s membership in the Hitler Youth, reports published today say he has “won strong praised from Jewish leaders…for his role in helping Pope John Paul II mend fences between Catholic and Jews” as can be seen by the statement of Rabbi Israel Singer, the chairman of the World Jewish Congress that he views “him as our most serious partner in the Catholic Church” over a span of time lasting twenty-six years.

2006(22nd of Nisan, 5766): Eighth Day of Pesach including recitation of Yizkor.

2006(22nd of Nisan, 5766): Seventy-seven-year-old Medal of Honor Jack Weinstein passed away today.

2006(22nd of Nisan, 5766): Eighty-two-year-old Paul Mortiz Cohn, the “Aster Professor of Mathematics at University College London passed away today.

2006: “President George W. Bush signed an official document declaring the month of May Jewish American Heritage Month (JAHM)”

2007(2nd of Iyar, 5767): Ninety-two year old Israeli rabbi Yehuda Meir Abrmowicz, the son Tzvi Yitzchok Abramowicz who made Aliyah in  1935 where “he served as general secretary of Agudat Yisrael, which he represented in the Knesset from 1972 until 1981, and as Deputy Speaker of the Knesset between 1977 and 1981” passed away today.

2007: Haaretz reported that sixty-six civilians were killed in hostile actions since last Independence Day, mostly during the Second Lebanon War, bringing the number of civilians killed in terror attacks since the state's establishment in 1948 to 1,635, according to National Insurance Institute (NII) Director Dr. Yigal Ben-Shalom.

2007: The Jerusalem Post reported that Prime Minister Ehud Olmert had condemned as "hurtful" and "spurious" comments made by former Sephardi chief rabbi Mordechai Eliyahu that the victims of the Holocaust were made to suffer because of the sins of the Reform Movement. Olmert went on to praise the Reform Movement as an important element in the “House of Israel.”

2007: U.S. premiere of “In The Land of Women” starring Adam Brody with a script by Jon Kasdan who also directed the film.

2008(15th of Nisan, 5768): First Day of Pesach

2008: San Francisco chefs Gayle Pirie and John Cook are and putting a Slow Food spin on the Passover Seder for the second night of Passover. The Seder, held at Foreign Cinema is sponsored by Heeb and is the magazine’s inaugural "Slow Food Seder.”

2008: The New York Times book section featured a review of “Dictation the most recent work of Jewish author Cynthia Ozick.

2008: The Washington Post book section featured a review of a biography of the Jewish poet Louis Zukofsky entitled “The Poem of a Life” by Mark Scroggins and an interview with American poet Edward Hirsch whose grandfather was a stringer for a Yiddish newspaper who wrote poems and copied them into the backs of books.

2008: The Sunday Chicago Tribune reported that two Torah scrolls were taken from Kenosha synagogue. Just days before the beginning of Passover, two Torah scrolls each worth an estimated $40,000 to $60,000, were reported stolen from a Jewish temple in Kenosha, officials said. On Tuesday, Rabbi Tzali Wilschanski of the Congregation Bnei Tzedek Chabad realized his laptop, which he had used during a class the night before, was missing. He checked to see whether the Torahs were safe, and discovered they were missing too. He said he last saw them April 5. Several valuable silver ornaments used to adorn the scrolls were not taken, leading Wilschanski to suspect that the robbery was not a garden-variety theft.
"If this was a hate crime, it would explain why they took something that is so dear to us," he said.
"If this was not a hate crime, it was the work of very sophisticated criminals who know that the Torah scrolls are much more valuable than the silver pieces." There were no signs of forced entry into the temple at 1602 56th St., but a deadbolt lock was open, Kenosha police Sgt. Hugh Rafferty said. While police do not have any suspects in custody, they are following several leads, he said.

2009: In Washington, D.C., Adina Hoffman, a Jerusalem-based writer, critic and founder of Ibis Editions, discusses and signs “My Happiness Bears No Relation to Happiness: A Poet's Life in the Palestinian Century, “her new biography of Palestinian poet Taha Muhammad Ali.

2009: Opening session of “Durban II Counter at the Fordham University School of Law. The American Association of Jewish Lawyers and Jurists sponsor this counter-conference organized to address the real issues of "racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and other forms of intolerance."  

2009: Human Rights Watch said in a new report issued today that Hamas security forces killed at least 32 Palestinian political rivals and those suspected of collaborating with Israel during and after the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip. The report also said “unlawful arrests, torture and killings in detention” were making a mockery of Hamas’s claims to uphold the law in Gaza, which is ruled by Hamas, an Islamic group.“Hamas should end its attacks on political opponents and suspected collaborators in Gaza, which have killed at least 32 Palestinians and maimed several dozen more during and since the recent Israeli military offensive,” the report by Human Rights Watch, an advocacy group, said. It said that gunmen believed to be from Hamas killed 18 Palestinians, most suspected of collaborating with Israel, and that another 14 Palestinians had been killed by people said to be members of Hamas security forces since Israel ended its offensive.

2009: Today President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad of Iran used the platform of a United Nations conference in Geneva on combating racism to disparage Israel as a “cruel and repressive racist regime,” prompting delegates from European nations to desert the hall and earning a rare harsh rebuke from Secretary General Ban Ki-moon.

2009: Lord Hoffmann (Leonard Hoffmann) completed his terms as Second Senior Lord of Appeal in Ordinary in South Africa.

2009: “President Obama formally nominated Fred Hochberg” the son of refugees from Nazi Germany   “to be Chairman and President of the [[Export-Import Bank.”

2009: Steve Reich was awarded the 2009 Pulitzer Prize for Music, on April 20, 2009, for Double Sextet

2010(6th Iyar, 5770): Yom Ha’Atzmaut

2010: In “a Federal Criminal Complaint dated today (Case No. 10-8082), Nevin Karey Shapiro who went to prison for running a $930 milling Ponzi scheme "directed others to create and show to the investors documents fraudulently touting the profitability” of Capitol Investments USA which was a key vehicle in the fraud.

2010: The US premier of “I Was There In Color,” is scheduled to take place as part the Yom Ha’Atzmaut celebration at the JCC in Manhattan.

2010: Or Ashual, a 17-year-old student at the Kfar Saba Amana girls’ school, became the 2010 winner of the World Bible Quiz competition today, which took place on Israel’s 62nd Independence Day at the Jerusalem Center for the Performing Arts.

2011(16th of Nisan, 5771): Second Day of Pesach

2011: Beit Avi Chai, in collaboration with Merkaz Hamagshimim Hadassah, is scheduled to hold its second annual English speaking amateur theatre festival: "Stage One".

2011: Two suspects were arrested today in connection with setting fire to a synagogue on the Greek island of Corfu a day earlier, Greek Police said. Arsonists set fire to a synagogue on the island early yesterday, damaging prayer books but causing no injuries, in the third such attack in Greece in less than two years, police said.

2011: A Haggadah Fair sponsored by Kol HaOt and the Inbal Hotel will open today in Jerusalem.

2011: One day after Steve Soboroff was hired to be the Vice Chairman of the LA Dodgers, Major League Baseball seized control of the team from Frank McCourt.

2012: “In Darkness” a film about Polish sewer worker and Jews living in the Lvov Ghetto is scheduled to be shown in Iowa City under the sponsorship of Agudas Achim.

2012: “Joanna” and “Life Is Too Long” are scheduled to be shown at the Westchester Jewish Film Festiva

2012: “The Man Behind the Curtain” provides a detailed review of Mr. Broadway: The Inside Story of the Shuberts, the Shows and the Stars by Gerald Schoenfield. 

2013: “No Place on Earth” is scheduled to be shown for the first time in Claremont, CA.

2013: Adam Burstain, the son of Todd and Jennifer Burstain - pillars of the Cedar Rapids Jewish community- and marvelous student of Judaism is scheduled to appear in the final performance of “Urine Town.”

2013: “Cabaret-Berlin: The Wild Scene” is scheduled to be shown at the Westchester Jewish Film Festival

2013: “Dorfman in Love” is scheduled to be shown at the Northern Virginia Jewish Film Festival.

2013: Israeli gymnast Alexander Shatilov won the gold medal in the European Men's Artistic Gymnastic individual Championships, held in Moscow today.

2013: U. S Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel will finalize a huge arms deal with Israel during his visit starting today, under which Israel will for the first time be permitted to purchase US aerial refueling planes and other ultra-sophisticated military equipment that could prove vital to any Israel strike against Iran’s nuclear facilities

2014: “Igor and the Crane’s Journey” is scheduled to be shown at the JCC Rockland International Jewish Film Festival.

2014:Helen Suzman: Fighter for Human Rights” an exhibition that has been on display at the Illinois Holocaust Museum and Education Center is scheduled to come to a close.

2014: The New York Times features reviews of books by Jewish authors and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including No Book But The World by Leah Hager Cohen, Updike by Adam Begley and

Plato at the Googleplex: Why Philosophy Won’t Go Away by Rebecca Newberger Goldstein

2015: Mark Strauss, the “well-known oil painter” and Holocaust survivor who wrote Crumbs under the pen-name of Marek Mann is scheduled to speak at the US Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C.

2015: “Secrets of War” and “Magic Men” are scheduled to be shown at the Westchester Jewish Film Festival.

2015: The American Sephardi Federation is scheduled to present a lecture by Rabbi Marvin Toyaker and Ellen Rodman, authors of Pepper, Silk & Ivory: Amazing Stories about Jews and the Far East.

2015: In Washington, DC, Dr. Samuel Gruber is scheduled to deliver a lecture that “will explore the evolution of the movement to preserve historic synagogues entitled “Preserving America’s Synagogues” Past and Future.”

2015(1st of Iyar, 5775): Rosh Chodesh Iyar

2015: Four days after he had passed away, funeral services were held today at the Sixth and I Historic Synagogue for Richard Suzman of Chevy Chase, MD, the “husband of Janice Krupnick” and father of Daniel and Jessica Suzman.

2015(1st of Iyar, 5775): Eighty-five-year-old record executive Bernard Stollman whose parents met in the balcony of a Yiddish theatre, passed away today.

2015(1st of Iyar, 5775): Ninety-year-old Frederick Morton, the baker turned author passed away today.

2015(1st of Iyar, 5775): Eighty-one-year-old Paris born Rosh Yeshiva and expert on Halakah rabbi Aharon Lichtenstein passed away at Alon Shvut, Israel.

2016: “A New Leaf” and “Michael Nichols: American Masters” are scheduled to be shown on the final night of the Westchester Jewish Film Festival.

2016: Two days after he had passed away, funeral services are scheduled be held for 92-year-old Rabbi Ben-Zion Gold, the native of Radom, Poland “who came to America in 1947 and settled in Cambridge, MA, where he became Director of the Hillel at Harvard” and whose mourners will include his daughters Merav and Hannah.

2016: The ShapeShifter Lab is scheduled to present the Alon Yavnai Big Band.

2016: The Samaritans are scheduled to celebrate their Passover today.

2016(12th of Nisan, 5776): Seventy-four-year-old University of South Carolina graduate and Columbia trained attorney Solomon Blatt, Jr. the Barnwell, SC bon son of Ethel Green and Speaker of the House of the South Carolina House of Representatives Solomon Blatt, Sr and husband of Carolyn Gayden with whom he had three children who served on a destroyer during WW II and who was Chief Judge of the United States District Court for the District of South Carolina at the time of his death, passed away today.

2017: In Arizona, the Valley Beit Midrash and the Jewish Book Council are scheduled to co-host “Why Be Jewish? – Continuing the Legacy of Edgar Bronfman”

2017: The Jerusalem Opera Spring concert scheduled for this evening will “pay home to Enrico Caruso.

2018:  The “12 day Journey of Remembrance and Celebration” sponsored by the Steicker Center is scheduled to come to an end today.

2018: In the Netherlands, a 23 year old man, identified in the media as “Jordi A” “drew a shape reminiscent of a cross on the main Holocaust memorial monument of The Hague.”

2018: “Hungarian Kosher Foods, a Chicago-area landmark for 45 years” “America’s first all –kosher supermarket” which was founded by “Holocaust survivor Sandor Kirsche” is scheduled to become the property today of “Orian Azulay, the owner of the kosher supermarket Sara’s Tent in Aventura, Florida.”

2018: In Metairie, LA, the Jewish Community Day School is its Yom Ha’atzmaut Celebration which including a torch lighting ceremony “representing the 12 Tribes of the people of Israel.”

2018: “Spring Scenes,” the final production of the Cleveland Institute of Music Opera Theatre under the leadership under the direction artistic director David Bamberger is scheduled to open this evening.

2019: “The Greater Reconstruction: American Democracy after the Civil War,” a two-day conference which was inaugurated by “President Susan Herbst of the University of Connecticut” and heard a keynote address by Professor Eric Foner is scheduled to come to an end today.

2019(15th of Nissan, 5779): First Day of Pesach

15th of Nisan, 5650 (1890): An untold number of poor New Yorkers enjoyed eating meat at their Seder tonight thanks to the generosity of Mrs. Paulina Rosendorff who had provided the funding that enabled butchers to distribute their product free of charge.

15th of Nisan, 5675(1915): The 300 Jewish soldiers and sailors who attended last night’s Seder sponsored by the Army and Navy Y.M.H.A. which also provided a night’s lodging at the Hotel Roland are scheduled to worship at Temple Beth Israel at Lexington and 72nd Street today while the Secretary of War, the Governor of New York and the Mayor of New York City have been invited to attend tonight’s Seder sponsored by the Army and Navy Young Men’s Hebrew Association for the benefit of 300 of the 8,000 Jews serving in the military which is being held at Vienna Hall on Lexington and 58th Street.

15th of Nisan, 5677 (1917): One day after U.S. declared War on Germany, Jews gather in the synagogue to observe Pesach and Shabbat

15th of Nisan, 5705(1945): At least 58 Jews were murdered in a forest near the Austrian village of Deutsch Shuetzen, in what would come to be called the Deutsch Shuetzen Massacre while in the evening, members of the Jewish Infantry Brigade of the British 8th Army serving in Italy took part in a Seder at Faenza.

15th of Nisan, 5725(1965):  While Jews in the Soviet struggled to deal with a shortage of Matzah created by the government refusal to let state bakeries prepare adequate supplies of unleavened bread Rabbis in America were encouraged to deliver sermons that related the themes of Pesach with fight for Civil Rights complete with references to the recent voting rights march in Selma.

15th of Nisan, 5728(1968): For the first time, Pesach is observed in a unified Jerusalem.

2020: Using Facebook, The YIVO Institute is scheduled to host “Beethoven in the Yiddish Imagination.

2020: Live on Zoom, the Leo Baeck Institute is scheduled to host “Overcoming the Present – A Virtual Salon with Max Czollek.

2020: Live on Zoom, the American Sephardi Federation is scheduled to host “Laughter is the Best Medicine: Virtual Comedy Show with K-von.”

2020: A reading on Zoom of the names for Holocaust Remembrance Day, followed by a commemorative program which is scheduled to be presented by S.F.-based JFCS Holocaust Center in partnership with many organizations.

2020: Three Berkeley, CA synagogues are scheduled to host a “Virtua Yom Hashaoh Commemoration” featuring Holocaust “survivor Ernst Valfer talking about the trauma of children separated from their parents.”

2020: The Streicker Center is scheduled to present “The Soap Myth: Play and Webinair” with Dr. Michael Berenbaum, Ira Forman, Jeff Cohen, Ed Asner and Tovah Feldshuh.

2020: This evening as Yom HaShoah begins the Board of Deputies of British Jews is scheduled to host “a virtual National Holocaust Commemoration marking the 75th anniversary of the end of the Shoah and the liberation of Bergen Belsen” by the British Army.

2021: YIVO is scheduled to present a discussion of Judy Batalion's new book, The Light of Days: The Untold Story of Women Resistance Fighters in Hitler’s Ghettos led by Andrew Silow-Carroll.

2021: In what shopkeepers in Israel see as welcome opportunity, “Ramadan, when Muslims refrain for eating and drinking from sunrise to sunset and gather for festive break-fast meals and to exchange gifts at night, is scheduled to kick off today. (As reported by Mohammad Al-Kassim/The Media Line)

2021: LBI is scheduled to host Griselda Pollock (University of Leeds, UK) who will be in conversation with Kerry Wallach (Gettysburg College, PA) about the work and life of the Berlin-born Jewish artist, Charlotte Salomon who was murdered at Auschwitz at the age of 26.

2021: Professor Marc Michael Epstein is scheduled to begin his course exploring the relationship between Jews and art throughout history at the London School of Jewish Studies.

2022(19th of Nisan, 5782): Fifth Day of Pesach

2022: In San Francisco, Congregation Emanu-El is scheduled to host “A Passover Evening Out,” a unique Chol Hamoed event that features a screening in the main sanctuary of “The Frisco Kid,” starring Gene Wilder and Harrison Ford, a 1979 comedy that includes a storyline about the first rabbi of Congregation Emanu-El trying to make his way west along with Passover desserts, wine and soft drinks in the courtyard.”

2022: UK Jewish Film is scheduled host the final online screening of “The Dinner.”

2022: The Wiener Holocaust Library is scheduled to host a virtual talk during which Senior Curator Dr. Barbara Warnock will explore the development of antisemitism in Western Europe from the late nineteenth century to today and the means by which Jewish organizations and other groups have fought back against antisemitism.”

2022: In San Rafael, CA, the Osher Marin, JCC is scheduled to host a “Passover Poetry Celebration” featuring a translated reading of the “Song of Songs” the scroll connected with Pesach by UC Berkeley professor Robert Alter, with a lecture on the book’s liturgical use during Passover.

2022: As terrorists fire rockets from Gaza and Islamic Jihad shows off its “tunnel city” that will be used in its next wave of attacks on Israel,  while the violence in Jerusalem which was called for by terror groups in Gaza on April 13 continues, “residents of Israeli communities living near the Gaza fear it's just a matter of time before the south becomes the battle zone yet again.”

2022: SFSU is scheduled to host Agata Bielik-Robson discussing her 2022 book about how 20th-century philosopher Jacques Derrida used his self-identification as a Marrano as a literary experiment of autofiction. Presented by SFSU Jewish Studies.

2023: The Vilna Shul is scheduled to host a behind-the-scenes tour of the Boston Athenaeum, including a special tour of the Great Boston Fire exhibit, “Revisiting the Ruins.”

2023: The Osher Marin is scheduled to host Henry Michalski discussing his book Torn Lilacs: A True WWII Story of Love, Defiance and Hope which tells the story of his parents’ survival from Poland to a remote island gulag in Siberia to Kazakhstan and his family’s eventual immigration to the U.S. through Ellis Island.

2023: The Streicker Center is scheduled to host a screening of the “The Lost Eichmann Tapes.”

2023: The Boston Workers Circle is scheduled to present “Antisemitism: Reclaiming the Conversation.”
2024: The Tulane Alumni Association is to honor Avron B. Fogelman with the Dermot McGlinchey Lifetime Achievement Award.

2024: In Jerusalem, Agnon House is scheduled to host another joint reading of Agnon's stories, this time called "The Legend of the Writer" with Adin Ner-David, who will try to provide an interpretation of the story, examine his poignant statement about the act of art and trace the biographical elements scattered throughout it.”

2024(12th of Nisan, 5784): Shabbat HaGadol; for more see

2024: As April 20th begins in Israel, the Hamas held hostages begin day 197 in captivity.  (Editor’s note: this situation is too fluid for this blog to cover so we are just providing a snapshot as of the posting at midnight Israeli time.)